“From an early age, I knew that I shared my dad with all of you.”
To paraphrase, that was an acknowledgement from Corey Martin, delivered today to the Sabres, player alumni, friends, and fans during a ceremony celebrating the life and passing of his father, Rick Martin.
Corey’s words brought the meaning of Martin’s passing back to proper perspective for all of us as a fan base. Rick Martin was first and foremost a good person, and a great father. His style of living served to uplift the lives of his family, and also countless numbers of people in WNY during and after his professional hockey career with the Sabres.
Corey thanked everyone, from the bottom of his heart – patting his chest emotively – for the immense amount of support that this team and this region has shown to him and the Martin family through the mourning of the loss.
And boy, what a loss it is. Fans – of all generations – have been reeling over his passing. But perhaps more importantly, over the last ten days, we have all come to know “Rico” a lot better. And, we’ve all come together a lot closer, under the influence of his warmth of life, and under the warmth of his memory.
We didn’t just lose a member of the famed “French Connection.” We lost a member of our Sabres Family.
Thank you, Corey, for courageously defining your father, and reminding us what it means to be a part of this extended Sports Family. It is so much bigger than all of us, and is a wonderful, warm network to be a part of.